Valtteri Bottas will be out of contract with Mercedes at the end of 2021, but the Finn has insisted he isn’t yet thinking about his plans for 2022 and beyond.
In response to a question asked by Formula1News.co.uk during a press conference on Tuesday following Mercedes’ launch of their 2021 challenger, the W12, Bottas said he is focused on the task ahead this upcoming season.
“That’s a bit too far from the radar or the timeline I’m thinking about at the moment,” Bottas replied when asked if he is considering leaving Mercedes at the end of 2021 to potentially give himself a better chance of winning a Championship by joining a team with a weaker second driver, for example.
“I’m just really thinking about this year and I shouldn’t waste any thought yet on those kinds of things.
“So [I’m] just focused on this year and trying to reach my goal, as I described [earlier in this press conference] and then we’ll see,” the Finn added.
Bottas has failed to outscore Sir Lewis Hamilton in the four seasons he has been at Mercedes, with the Brit winning every Championship since Nico Rosberg retired from Formula One at the end of 2016.
In the same press conference yesterday, Bottas reflected on his performance last year and said he believes he could have done a better job.
“I had a good reset. As I always say, and as many other drivers say, it’s important to switch off and to disconnect,” Bottas said when asked about his off-season.
“And when you step out of the sport, let’s say for a couple of weeks, you start processing things, start to realise things and see the big picture.
“If I look at last year, yes there were races I couldn’t affect, but there were some races I could’ve done a better job,” he added.